California Southern University Reviews

  • 55 Reviews
  • Irvine (CA)
71% of 55 students said this degree improved their career prospects
69% of 55 students said they would recommend this school to others
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Student & Graduate Reviews

SGR
  • Reviewed: 1/26/2019
  • Degree: Clinical Psychology
"I have been enrolled at California Southern University working on a clinical psychology degree since spring 2018. I have maintained a 4.0 answering all of my questions with the answers I knew they wanted to hear. I requested to speak with the dean regarding the curriculum. In particular the social justice that was connected to every assignment. I told her that I grew up in a time when students were taught to pay attention to their prejudice. I learned that we should get to know someone before we judge them. What I am learning now categorizes people by their race, sex, and culture. I told her I found this inappropriate for a clinical psychology program and that I would like to start writing my papers in a manner that might be unpopular by challenging these ideas. I also told her that I have concerns with the way the text asserts that microaggressions can only be directed towards minorities, and since white males are not minorities they cannot experience microaggressions. I feel the new way of teaching tolerance is more harmful than the old way. Finally, I asked if her school would support a student that challenges these ideas in an academically cited dissertation. I didnt want to waste more time and money to be rejected later on. She told me that this school is not a good fit for me. She would rather remove a student with a different viewpoint than take my money and show that her school supports, or even tolerates, diversity of thought."
paradoxtx
  • Reviewed: 1/26/2019
  • Degree: Psychology
"The school's culture is far from inclusive. Faculty are biased, unable to be objective and completely illogical when challenged. When obvious issues are addressed with the department heads they are inept and have no desire to engage or address the problem. Far better choices out there."
DrMF
  • Reviewed: 1/13/2019
  • Degree: Psychology
"This was a fantastic choice for me. I already have a Masters degree and license and work experience. So, this was the perfect fit -- online, flexible, affordable compared to brick & mortars. I would only recommend it for those with real world experience or I think you will be lost. You must also be highly self-motivated! The mentors were usually great (except for 1 the whole time I was there). You will not get a ton of feedback on your work though and the doctoral project was hellish. However, I learned so much and they keep the classes cutting edge. I recently heard about some inappropriate behavior by the president/owner which is discouraging. There are a lot of changes going on due to this and I am glad I finished before it all started."
J
  • Reviewed: 12/4/2018
  • Degree: Clinical Psychology
"I just completed my first year in the PsyD program and am so glad I chose this school. I received my Masters of Science in Clinical Psychology from Vanguard University (wonderful and rigorous program for counseling/MFT work), and wanted to complete a PsyD for the doctoral level education, title, and option to become a clinical psychologist so that I may do psych testing in my private practice. I feel confident in my therapy techniques from my experience at Vanguard, and not sure I would feel as prepared for the clinical work with clients had I not already completed the grad psych program; I found the in-person feedback I received there to be invaluable in regards to practicing therapeutic techniques. However, if you are already a practicing therapist and would like to add a doctoral level of education to your resume, this is a challenging and informative program. I have had immediate responsiveness with any and all people in the registrar offices, my academic advisor, and all of my teachers, or "mentors." So far so good, and will update this after I complete my second year!"
LCJ
  • Reviewed: 10/5/2018
  • Degree: Business Administration
"I enrolled at Cal Southern as a transfer student in 2016 to complete my degree. I chose Cal Southern because it was (a) fully online (b) regionally accredited and (c) very, very affordable. Since it had been years since I had dealt with college-level work and I was BURNING to complete my degree (with a high GPA), I was apprehensive about diving in to full-time study. Anyone who's taken on the big commitment that online degree-seeking can bring knows that being a student, professional, parent and/or partner is HARD WORK. The demands it makes on your time, mental and emotional resources can are kin to having a baby: It blows up your schedule, disrupts your life and taxes you mentally, emotionally and financially. But, unlike a real baby... your parents/partner/etc. can't babysit for you. This baby is ALL YOURS. Only YOU can do the work. Cal Southern staffers are all capable, degree-holding professionals who do an excellent and conscientious job of preparing and supporting your efforts, but if you're looking for big-campus style hand-holding, exceptions, do-overs, extensions and instant feedback, there are plenty of bigger, more expensive "brand name" schools to look at. Compared to most Universities, this is a small school. The admissions process is short, the tuition is low, the coursework is demanding and the pace of study is QUICK. The campus sits on a large, dedicated commercial park in Orange County where the University's counselors, admins and mentors (instructors) all work to support you in your studies and help you succeed. You can make an appointment, visit the campus, attend lectures and even meet with counselors and administrators should you choose to. I made a visit and bumped into the business school dean in the hallway. Sharp guy. Ultimately, though, there is no football program, lighted stadium, marching band or cheerleaders. Not yet, anyway. This is a school for highly-motivated, non-traditional, self-starter professionals -- people with a burning desire for self-improvement who can set goals, clear obstacles, be consistent and Get Things Done in a structured, academic way. The bottom line is this is a 40-year old, regionally accredited post-secondary institution that holds numerous institutional, departmental and programmatic accreditations, licenses and associations. If you're looking for an 'easy' path to a plaque-on-a-wall type job promotion, there are schools with less rigorous courses of study. Earning a degree here is the mark of real achievement, not the byproduct of transaction or a slew of slide shows, quizzes and multiple choice exams. You will read, digest and discuss, write/revise and rewrite a LOT at this school. A LOT. Perfecting research papers is what they do here. While the learning model is very different from the traditional on-campus environment, you will be challenged, you will be tested and, should you graduate, you will be a different and much more self-aware, confident and proud student, professional and person once you do. For my part, thanks to the year of challenge, growth and AACSB-accredited coursework I completed at Cal Southern, I was able to successfully qualify/transfer into a highly ranked entrepreneurial program at a major research university here in the West. So, while not widely known to the general public, the University's profile in academic circles is growing, makes it a smart choice for those who know where they're going and just need a workable path to get there."
Heather
  • Reviewed: 9/18/2018
  • Degree: Psychology
"Endless essays where you read by yourself and write papers. Poor school with professors they call 'mentors' that grade your papers from their homes. They don't read papers and fake grades, no feedback. 5 Presidents in 2 years and my academic advisor changed 3 times. Gives degrees a bad name."
May Ahmed
  • Reviewed: 8/22/2018
  • Degree: Psychology
"This school is very unprofessional. They keep pushing you to apply to the school and once you do no one is contact with you. My "advisor" never answered back my emails. I submitted all the proper work I had to do, and all they would speak to me about is the monthly payments I had to make before I even got accepted into the school. I call one day to check up on the status of my application and they tell me that they aren't accepting anyone from New York. It would've been professional to get an email or something after I paid the fee and submitted all the proper paperwork. I wouldn't recommend this school at all!"
Mimi
  • Reviewed: 8/13/2018
  • Degree: Sports Psychology
"Overall I would rate my experience with this school as okay. I did the online degree option and they were always swift in replying throughout the two years that I "attended". However, when it got closer to the end of my degree, that is when they started to delay in their timely response to any concerns that I would have. I needed my transcripts sent via e-mail and had a deadline I had to meet. No matter how many times I would e-mail them they would never get back to me, so I ended up missing the deadline. Also, I finished my degree this past March and have yet to receive my diploma (it is now going on mid August). I really wanted to continue to attend this school for my doctorate, but it seems they will cast you to the side once you have payed everything and are done with your degree. I was very disappointed."
VMC
  • Reviewed: 6/18/2018
  • Degree: Psychology
"Actually, I did not get a degree/certificate, I just took doctoral-level psychology courses to supplement my Ed.D. degree from Walden University. I really liked the "laid-back, yet professional" atmosphere of the classes and the instructors. The coursework was demanding but not overbearing and I learned a lot. The tuition is very cheap and classes start monthly. Each class is completed in 8 weeks. I really considered getting a second doctorate (Psy.D.) at the CalSouthern, but the program is set up for people who want to be licensed and go into practice. I just wanted a general Psy.D. that was non-licensure and allowed me the freedom to take more electives. Nonetheless, I recommend the university highly."
Denis Burke
  • Reviewed: 4/29/2018
  • Degree: Business Administration
"I'm an active student at California Southern University. The DBA is very challenging. I have found the staff and mentors(professors)to be very helpful. I'd recommend the school and the DBA program to anyone who is seeking to broaden their business education at a highly challenging intellectual level. I enjoy the flexibility of the online experience and plan to beat the schools record for getting a DBA in slightly less than 2.5 years. I recommend the school. "
Denis Burke
  • Reviewed: 4/29/2018
  • Degree: Business Administration
"I'm an active student at California Southern University. The DBA is very challenging. I have found the staff and mentors(professors)to be very helpful. I'd recommend the school and the DBA program to anyone who is seeking to broaden their business education at a highly challenging intellectual level. I enjoy the flexibility of the online experience and plan to beat the schools record for getting a DBA in slightly less than 2.5 years. I recommend the school. "
J.S.
  • Reviewed: 3/11/2018
  • Degree: Psychology
"I am really enjoying my classes at California Southern University. It's master's degree program is challenging, but I am learning a lot. The staff at CSU cares abut your learning, and they touch base with you. I would recommend this program for people who prefer not to commute to classes and are self motivated. I feel like I am getting a "good" education."
Successful PsyD Graduate of California Southern University
  • Reviewed: 12/22/2017
  • Degree: Clinical Psychology
"California Southern University is a great University. My doctorate this year was the "capstone" to my career. Having been working in mental health for the past almost 30-years the University offered me an alternative way to learn and improve myself. The professors, who are called mentors were all great and highly qualified as they have experience in both the "real world" and the University which makes them more holistic individuals. Initially I started thinking it would be too much work to earn the PsyD, but focused on one class at a time with the intention of learning something new which made me a better clinician for the folks that I worked with. Ideally the clinician applies what they learn with their interactions with clients. So, yes for me the Degree was worth the hard work, believing that anything worth achieving requires an amount of effort helps."
Prisca Toland
  • Reviewed: 9/15/2017
  • Degree: Psychology
"Studying at CalSouthern was an absolutely amazing experience. The courses were relevant to my field, delivered to the utmost standard with the professors always being available and reviewing projects, papers and ultimately my thesis to a very high standard. Going back to University was quite tough, it took me about 20 hours per week to go through the reading material, research on their very up todate library and submit papers. I can only recommend CalSouthern!"
Ashleigh A.
  • Reviewed: 6/19/2017
  • Degree: Psychology
"I have a masters in Clinical Counseling from an APA accredited school, and am currently working as a mental health counselor. I have attended both state and private schools and the curriculum and level of mastery expected by California Southern is by far the most challenging. I had reservations at first in obtaining my PsyD from an online school, however California Southern has exceeded my expectations. They have a plethora of online resources and data bases. I am currently enrolled in my third class and plan on continuing. That being said, this program is a fit for a person who is a self starter and is able to work independently."
PsyD
  • Reviewed: 5/26/2017
  • Degree: Psychology
"If you are able to withstand the rigors of a focused program with specific criteria that needs to be met this will be a good program to consider. With regional accreditation this program does meet the requirements in a number of states to sit for licensure as a psychologist. It is critical to determine if your state will accept this program as some do not. The doctoral project process is rigorous without the sacrifice of years of schooling focused on one topic as with PhD programs. I became a better clinician, met a primary life goal and have now had career opportunities that I would never otherwise had because of my education at CSU. If you need a lot of consistent feedback, socialization and assistance to stay on task this may not be the program for you. If you are a busy clinician who wants a flexible academic schedule that a full time doctoral program would not be suitable for CSU may just be exactly what you are looking for. The reasonable tuition rates don't exactly hurt either. Great experience all the way around."
SANDIEGOSERENITY
  • Reviewed: 3/28/2017
  • Degree: Psychology
"I have only taken a few courses so far. My academic advisor isnt very responsive and you get the sense that she feels put upon in each interaction. In fact, it should have been a red flag to me when she called me twice within about an hour when I enrolled to welcome me with the identical spiel; she had no idea she already just talked to me and was fake knowledgeable about me personally. I didnt say anything. I just listened both times and laughingly mentioned to my friend that I could tell the experience was going to be less than personal. Hopefully I wont need to count on her for anything too important, a little worrisome. My teachers (they use the term faculty mentor) have been good and available, but really you need to be self-motivated and able to figure things out for yourself. My second teacher seemed to be new to the school and was having difficulty understanding their systems. It made it a little tricky because I got the feeling from her that people might have been complaining about her learning curve and so she seemed a little on edge. It all worked out though. The classes are good. If you have no experience in psychology, the material is challenging - not neurosurgery, med school challenging but you cant just spend a few hours each weekend and get through the material. It is time consuming with lots of reading, 4-6 papers per class, a weekly forum blog to post and a two-hour final exam covering all the material from the texts. As an aside, buy your texts online somewhere. I tried their bookstore on their website and it was a train wreck, with nice people who were completely incompetent (at least in the one instance when I tried to buy from them). Also, do not rely on their list of books in the section where you click on links to classes and books needed; go to the course syllabus and get books listed there. I have at least one instance where there was a mismatch and the syllabus is what is operable. By the way, another instance when I reached out to my advisor who was her usual completely unhelpful self. I am reasonably happy with my experience so far for the price. I am very happy with classes and teachers and if my advisors responsiveness and interactional style were better, I would rate it as an excellent experience. So, I am not worried that I am not learning what I need, but just slightly concerned that if (really when) I hit a glitch, I have an advisor that wont be all that helpful."
Aria
  • Reviewed: 3/17/2017
  • Degree: Business
"The faculty are nice and mean well, but are underpaid and so I can't really blame them for not always being available when you need them. The admin staff or 'academic advisors' as they are called, in the school of business are under-qualified and will get back to you when they feel like it. Jovan Zamorano was always great example of the level of incompetence I grew to expect when dealing with the staff."
CurrentStudent 2017
  • Reviewed: 2/27/2017
  • Degree: Psychology
"If you are a self starter who learns well on their own and can commit to a fast paced program, then this is the school for you. Classes run about 8 weeks long (1/2 the time of the traditional 16 week semester format) and unless you have minimal other responsibilities I wouldn't recommend taking more than 1 class at a time. You're assigned 2 or 3 chapters per week to read. Forum discussions are weekly and mandatory as they account for a % of your final grade. You will have 4 or more papers assigned in the course syllabus. And yes, there is a comprehensive final exam. The assignments are arranged to encourage you to formulate your own conclusions and support your argument by applying the theories you have studied. An advisor is assigned to each student to help guide them through the master's program. And a mentor is assigned to each course to provide support and feedback. Mentors, like professors, have office hours and grade your work; however, they do not "teach" the class. They are there as a resource if guidance is needed, but you will ultimately be in charge of your own learning. This means you have to read the book, research via the virtual library of articles and journals if you don't understand something, confer with your classmates, use the video library to supplement the coursework, and be an active participant in your learning experience. This structure is well organized and easy to follow. They provide a suggested schedule, so as long as you're on pace or faster you won't be overwhelmed by the end of the course. They provide Microsoft Office 365 which includes word and outlook. They are regionally accredited, so I felt comfortable applying to earn my degree from them. You won't regret being a CalSouthern student. Their integrity and dedication to the quality of their students' education convinced me that they are the best online university to attend."
Babandi Gumel
  • Reviewed: 1/23/2017
  • Degree: Business
"CSU is no joke, that is why the university is regionally accredited. The weekly course work is highly structured to expose learners to the 21st century business environment. As 100% online university, mentors present those required guide and explanation for your success. Some mentors went extra length to arrange WebEx meeting with learners which provided networking opportunity, and better understanding of the course content. i will recommend the CSU DBA to those that want to have the knowledge plus the Dr. behind their names. For those seeking for the later, CSU is not the place,"